Home remedies for stretch marks
While you’re probably enjoying your growing belly and are amazed by your expanding boobs, there’s little to like about the stretch marks that tend to appear during the second trimester.
Officially, stretch marks go by the sinister-sounding name of striae gravidarum. Around 90 percent of all pregnant women will be horrified to find them on their abdomen, buttocks, thighs, and breasts.
As you get bigger, the middle layer of skin, the dermis, becomes unusually stretched (along with your capacity for sleep, and tolerance for people who take more than thirty seconds at the ATM). This puts your skin’s collagen under strain. Weakened, it may tear, and bingo, there’s a stretch mark.
The stretchmarks that occur when we put on a lot of weight result when the collagen bundles are stretched to the point of breaking by the fat, which is laid down underneath the skin.
During pregnancy, these marks appear on the breasts, the abdomen, and also on the thighs and buttocks. They will remain pinkish throughout pregnancy, but after delivery they shrink and become a silvery colour after nine month
Along with that expanding belly, comes stretching skin. It seems as if the more the skin stretches, the “itchier” it gets, almost as if the skin is popping from its seams. Scratching doesn’t really do any good. The best remedy is to use creams to alleviate the dryness of the skin.
Stretch marks are a common occurrence during pregnancy. Be prepared for them. Stretch marks can vary in color, ranging from purple to pink initially, but eventually they become silver or white. They usually appear on the lower half of the abdomen, but also can occur on the breasts and thighs. At present there is no effective treatment to prevent stretch marks from occurring. In addition, it’s very difficult to eliminate them once they have appeared.
Surprisingly, stretch marks are not caused by weight gain, but are usually the result of the stretching of normal skin. There is very little you can do to prevent them, and there may be a genetic predisposition or component to whether or not you get them. Or you may not get stretch marks from the one pregnancy, but will get them on others.
If your mother got stretch marks, then you probably will too, although you won’t know for sure until it’s too late. So, if you’re not a gambling woman, you may want to try one or all of the tactics below. None are actually scientifically proven to help, but they may. And that’s good enough for me.
- Drink more water: Well-hydrated skin stretches better.
- Use a loofali: Gently massaging the susceptible areas improves circulation, which may help.
- Gain weight slowly and steadily: Rapid and/or excessive weight gain can make stretch marks worse.
- Apply cream daily: Some women say that simple cocoa butter works wonders. Of course, they may be the same women who don’t get stretch marks anyway. (Their babies are probably ugly, too.)
AVOIDING STRETCH MARKS
Your tummy will still be big for a while, only it won’t be firm and round any more, it’ll be as wobbly as blancmange. Don’t whatever you do worry about this during the first few months – there’ll be time enough in the future to get back into your old jeans – and it’s certainly not a good idea to start working out before the first six weeks. However, if you want to make a tentative start on getting some strength back in your abdomen, you can, by gently pulling in your tummy and holding it for a few seconds before releasing, whenever you get the chance.
As for stretch marks, if you have them, they’ll fade eventually – although they won’t go altogether. There are lots of lotions and potions on the market at varying prices that claim to help, but since none are proven to have dramatic effects, you may as well stick to inexpensive cocoa butter or vitamin E-based brands if you’re keen to give one a go. Meanwhile, lots of women swear by fake tan as a means of covering up the worst of their ‘baby battlescars’.
If your stretch marks are really bad and are getting you down, however, it’s worth chatting to your GP about it as there are a couple of stronger treatment creams available and he may be willing to prescribe one for you. If you’re truly desperate – and have the financial clout – you could look at either laser treatment or cosmetic surgery, but talk to your doctor first.
BUDDHA BELLY MASK
Soothe your growing belly
Snacking fifteen times a day? You might as well feed your belly from the outside, too. As your midsection stretches to places you never thought possible, make time to show your appreciation for your baby’s temporary home by liberally applying this delicious moisturizing mask made of avocado, honey, and molasses to your belly. When you rinse clean after applying the mask, you’ll also be gently exfoliating the skin. While this mask looks and smells delicious, please don’t be tempted to taste it, as it contains essential oil.
If you need to buy molasses to make the belly mask, opt for blackstrap molasses. It’s an excellent source of iron and calcium, essential nutrients for a pregnant woman, and is also rich in copper, manganese, potassium, and magnesium. You may not want to sweeten your tea with it, but it certainly makes gingerbread delicious.
Makes 1 application
1/4 cup avocado
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
In a small bowl, mash the avocado, then stir in the remaining ingredients. Add extra orange juice if the mixture is too thick. Spread the mask over your belly and leave it on for at least 30 minutes before using a warm washcloth to rinse it off.
Optional Video : How to Remove Stretch Marks Permanently Using Home Remedies : DIY Skin Care Tips